Friday, January 30, 2015

Freezing Fog

Before the sun penetrated through the sea smoke this morning there were freezing fog conditions in Halifax. Cold steel - particularly on ships - is an ideal surface for attracting frozen fog, but most ships that were visible seemed little effected. After yesterday's very busy day in the port, things are returning to relative calm again.

BW Lynx sailed from number one anchorage. It had been at Valero Eastern Passage until last night when it moved out for bunkers.

Atlantic Conveyor sailed from Fairview Cove on its usual routine, passing Connors Diving's Eastcom off Point Pleasant Park.

Anchored in the main harbor British Integrity awaits its turn for bunkers.

And George's Island remains anchored in its usual position, with a nice coating of snow.
The orange buoys have been set out to mark the anchors for Waterworks Construction's barge that is working on the new cruise ship bollard at Tall Ship Quay.


Thursday, January 29, 2015

A.T.Cameron - golden oldie

From deep within the shoebox we find the Canadian research trawler A.T.Cameron.

In 1956 the Fisheries Research Board of Canada ordered the construction of this vessel from Marine Industries Ltd in Sorel, QC and it was delivered in late October 1958. Interestingly Canadian naval architects Milne Gilmore+German wrote the specifications for the ship, but it was designed by Graham+Wodnough of London, England. Built to trawler lines, it had an aluminum superstructure and was fitted with a second deck, except in the engine room. Dimensions were 177-'3" loa x 32-5" breadth and 12'-7"draft.
Powered by a 1,000 bhp B+W Alpha engine, it had a range of 7500 miles. Its six officers, 19 crew and nine scientists trawled for fish but also trialed new gear, different nets and various methodologies, and conducted tests in the labs.

Delivered at 748 grt (later 753 grt), it was named for the  the late Alexander Thomas Cameron, Chair of the Fisheries Research Board (FRB) from 1934 until his death in 1947. First skipper was Capt. Baxter Blackwood. To be based in St.John's, Newfoundland, it worked on the Grand Banks and in the Gulf of St.Lawrence for 2/3 of the year, but shifted to Halifax or St.Andrews, NB in winter where it worked as far south as George's Bank. There was a large FRB lab in Halifax at the time, and its field work was often conducted by the Cameron, although it also had its own research trawler, the Harengus.[see Appendix]

The ship was ice strengthened, but that was more as a convenience, since the Grand Banks is more dangerous for freezing spray in winter, and the Gulf is too choked with ice to conduct most research, particularly with nets.

After twenty-three years of faithful service, although still in excellent condition, the boat had become outmoded. Since most commercial fishing was now conducted by stern trawlers, the Department ordered new ships of that type. Wilfred Templeman was the replacement, to be based in St.John's and Alfred Needler, a twin, based in Halifax.

A.T.Cameron was renamed 81-4 in 1981 and decommissioned. However there were teething problems with the engines in the news trawlers and 81-4 returned to service well in to 1982. 

Arctic Ranger shows off her fine lines on the synchrolift at Newfoundland Dockyard. Marine Atlantic's Marine Courier is hauled out at left, and the tanker Jennie W. is in the middle.

When finally sold, it went to Central Fuel + Supplies Ltd of Glovertown, NL and was renamed Arctic Ranger (namesake was a famous Newfoundland sealer). It was used for research, patrol and standby duties until re-sold in 1988.

It then began an interesting phase of its career as Arctic Discoverer under the US flag, but owned by a Canadian sub-sea salvage firm. It is credited with finding and salvaging huge quantities of Spanish treasure from sunken ships in the Caribbean. By 2002 it has been laid up in some time at Green Cove Springs, FL and mouldered there until finally broken up in May 2013.

That might have been the end of the story except for one industrious mariner from the Netherlands, while visiting Green Cove Springs as master of a ship in 2013, found one of A.T.Cameron's original lifeboats, bought it, transported it back to the Netherlands as deck cargo and converted it into a delightful little cruiser.  Named Arctic Ranger, the indestructible aluminum boat will likely keep A.T.Cameron's memory alive for some time to come.

I was pleased to provide the owner with some documentation about the likely builder of the boat, and
 the photos in this post. The one just above, shows a clinker built wooden skiff, and aft of that the port side lifeboat. There was a starboard side companion, but it disappeared during later conversions. Therefore the after most boat, just above the supervising gull, may well be the one that was restored to use.

The Fisheries Research Baord in Halifax operated its own research "dragger" (local parlance for a wooden trawler, but which came to be used for all trawlers catching bottom fish). If you have seen C.D. Maginley's new book The Canadain Coast Guard Fleet you will see the boat as originally configured. As its name Harengus would suggest, it was initially used for herring research. It had its house amidships, a large open deck aft and a large derrick and wooden skiffs to handle the purse seine. Built in Shelburne in 1946, it was 84 ft long and measured 100 grt.
From 1946 Capt. Claude Darrach, OBE of Herring Cove, NS (appropriately enough) was master.
In the spring of 1954  it was rebuilt at the Dartmouth Marine Slip and now resembled a conventional wooden trawler, with cabin aft and crew forecastle forward. It was fitted for otter trawling with gallows on the port side. It served the FRB out of Halifax until the 1977 when it was sold to Robert W. Baker of West Green Harbour, NS and in 1979 to Pierce Fisheries Ltd of Lockeport, NS for commercial fishing. Its register was closed in 1986.   
Harengus berthed amongst the Fisheries Protection fleet at Queen's Wharf in Halifax. Upper photo, with Chebucto (i), lower photo with Cygnus (ii) at left and Lacuna at right.


Bigger ships for Zim and fuel woes

Zim has announced they are dropping their Asia Europe service in the face of competition from  the mega ships operated by consortia of major shipping lines. Unable to match the per box rate of 16,000 TEU+ ships, they will concentrate on their other services, two of which call in Halifax. One advantage Zim will now have is the availability of ships displaced by the mega ships. Zim will have the choice of many such ships in the 6,000 to 8,000 TEU range at competitive rates, but they may not come to Halifax. What we are beginning to see are ships that have been displaced by the 6,000 to 8,000 TEU ships. It is the trickle down theory at work. The ships may not seem at first to be Zim ships, since they will be chartered, maybe short term, and will have come off other charters, with different colours and non-Zim names.

One such arrival today is Dolphin II  the former CMA CGM Dolphin, now flying the Panamanian flag and operated by Technomar Shipping Inc. The 54,309 grt ship was built in 2007 by Hyundai Samho and carries 5078 TEU (including 330 reefers). It was owned by CMA CGM until 2010 when it was acquired by Technomar and chartered back to CMA CGM until early 2013. Zim and CMA CGM have an arrangement, so the ship may well be still under CMA CGM contract.

Dolphin II arrives with almost solely Zim containers on deck.

 As the ship swung into the sun there could be little doubt about its former operators.

Smaller Zim ships will also be displaced in time, such as today's earlier arrival Zim Texas. Built in 2011 by Jiangsu Zijiang Shipyard it is a 40,542 grt ship that can carry 4256 TEU. It arrived in Halifax for the first time July 21, 2011, and was then a brand new ship. Although it flies the Marshal Islands flag, it is owned by a company incorporated in the Isle of Man, but its technical management is by Rickmers Ship Management of Singapore.

 It was a few minutes late getting away, and its berth was taken immediately by Dolphin II. Once outside the pilot station, but still in the Halifax VTS zone the ship announced a main engine breakdown and advised that it would be drifting in place for "one hour" - which stretched into about 2.5 hours - before the engine could be repaired.

The ship is bound for New York, and will no doubt be closely monitored under the new regime, wherein low sulphur fuels are now required. We can expect many more of these engine failures due to fuel issues, and ships will be drifting around or calling in tugs all along the coasts.The reliability of engines built for heavy fuel will be key to this problem. .


Bluenose in distress

On January 29, 1946 the iconic schooner Bluenose ran onto a reef in Haiti and was lost. Far past its prime, the vessel had been cut down and motorized and had become a humble freighter. That it was lost in the Caribbean, far from the scene of of its triumphs off Halifax and Gloucester, was a reflection on the transient nature of wooden hulls.

Once its usefulness as a racer and a fishing vessel had ended it was re-purposed to try to squeeze some income out of it for its last few years. Certainly there was some nostalgia for the schooner, but the reality was that it was not built to last forever, and that some day it would reach the end of its life.

Shifting gears ahead 69 years to January 28, 2015 - the Nova Scotia Auditor General relased his report on the restoratIon of  Bluenose II. It has also become an iconic vessel, but perhaps for the wrong reasons. Built as a promotional piece for a brewery, it was taken over by the Province of Nova Scotia, and extensively rebuilt and refitted as a sailing ambassador, tourism promoter and tour boat.

Despite the large investment, Bluenose II had also reached the end of its life. Sentimentality apparently prevailed over wisdom and it was decided to "restore" the schooner. In fact is was rebuilt from the keel up with all new material, saving little except some masts and fittings. The Auditor General found that the project was mismanaged from the start, suffered from an unrealistic budget, which has been exceeded, and is at least two years late in completion, thanks in large part to the dysfunctionality of the project team.

What to make of this fiasco?  Certainly there is a virtually new Bluenose II sitting in Lunenburg, NS. It will probably be sailing sometime in 2015, and it will continue to be contentious for the next 25 or 30 years or  until it has also reached the end of its reasonable lifespan.    

The wisdom of the whole project has been brought into question, but the schooner will still be a graceful reminder of days gone by, and perhaps that is worth a lot.


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Astrakhan LoRos

Left out of the recent feature on Con-Ros (container ships with roll-on, roll-off capability) were the Astrakhan series of ships. Although they could carry containers, they were in reality general cargo ships with extensive cargo handling gear, including heavy lift, but also with RoRo.Thus they were called LoRos (Lift On-Off, Roll On-Off).
All were built by VEB Warnemunde, in what was East Germany, and most were operated by eastern bloc countries, particularly the USSR. They were built to military specs with high grade steel, and Baltic Ice Class B. To be self-sustaining for any type of cargo operation, they had a starboard quarter stern ramp that could be used as a landing stage for lightering operations.They were to be 17,500 deadweight tonnes with 1,040 lane meters for RoRo.
There were three Types or Marks, built between 1986 and 1992. 

Rachel built as Budapesht in 1985, was a Type I, with a two pairs of 12.5 tonne cranes and a midships 125 tonne derrick and two 25 tonne derricks. Capacity was 533 TEU, 232 cars, 22 trailers, It later served as 98: Seaboard Texas, 98: Rachel, 00: Wind Admiral, 03: Budapesht, 04: Atlantic Leader
It arrived in Alang October 24, 2011 where it was broken up.

Built as Kolomna in 1989 as a Type II , with two pairs of 12 tonne cranes and one pair of 25 tonne cranes. Capacity was 619 TEU, 232 cars, 22 trailers and could carry bulk cargoes. It became Global Eagle in 1997, and 00: Marie Delmas, 01: Hanseatic Voyager, 01: Global Eagle, 02: OBL Omni, 03: Al Naser. It is reported to be still in service under the Jordanian flag, and owned by Iraq Government Transport.

One of the large users of Astrakhan type ships was Atlantic RoRo Carriers, operating year round out of St.Petersburg, Russia. They were sometims callers in Halifax, but are rarely seen now. Since 2008 the same ships serve Canada States Africa Line (CSAL), the successor to Canadian Christensen Africa Line (CCAL) that was started in 1956 by A/S Thor Dahl. They call in Montreal, then Baltimore and other US ports before crossing to South Africa.

Baltic Mercur experienced Baltic type conditions (but without the ice) in Halifax in 2001 when on Atlantic RoRo service. Built in 1988 as Vyborg for USSR owners, it became Lima in 1996 and Baltic Mercur in 2000 for Hamburg based owners, Interorient Navigation Co Ltd, under the Liberian flag. It is a typical Type I Astrakhan, with 125 tonne heavy lift derrick.
It arrived in Alang September 18, 2014 and was soon broken up.

 Atlantic Action was only in port for an hour when it called in 2005, working very little cargo.

 In 2006, upbound on the St.Lawrence River it seemed to be loaded with containers.

It is a Type III, with only a single crane forward, built in 1993 as Victor Konchayev. In 1996 it became Gemini Star and carried the names 97: Bremen Carrier, 98: Nordana Kisumi, 99: Seaboard Chile, 2001: Atlantic Cavalier to 2002, before receiving the name Atlantic Action.
Since 2010 it has been sailing under the Maltese flag for Atlantic Ship Management of Odessa, Ukraine.

Atlantic Impala glides up the St.Lawrence on CSAL service.It was launched in 1990, but not delivered until 1993 as a Type III Astrakhan, with single crane forward. Its original name was Georgiy Tovstonogov and followed a similar pattern to others of its type as 96: Global Falcon, 98: Bremer Falcon, 99: Seaboard Peru, 02: Nordana Surveyor, 03: Nord, 03: Rotorua before becoming Atlantic Impala in 2008.
At last report December 17,  2014 it was anchored in the Bay of Bengal south of Chittagong awaiting a scrap berth. 

The Mark I Astrakhan cared a heavy lift derrick amidships.

The stern ramp was mounted on the starboard quarter, and fed internal ramps to the tween decks.

Atlantic Hope was a Mark I type, built in 1987. It had a ten different names during its career. Built as Baltiysk then was 96: Aeneas, 96: Santiago, 97: Montreal, 98: PCC Houston, 01: Norgate Pride, 03: Global Spirit I, 04: Lykes Hunter, 05: Olga, and finally 08: Atlantic Hope. It operated for ARRC until it was beached at Alang December 4, 2012. 

There is also one Astrakhan class ship flying the Canadian flag. Anna Desgagnés was built in 1986 as Truskavets, and was acquired by Transport Desgagnés in 1996. It is used for northern supply work in summer and for several winters was flagged out to Barbados and worked by Atlantic RoRo Carriers. Its normal route was St.Petersburg, Charleston, Baltimore, New Orleans, Brownsville, Houston, Rotterdam, St. Petersburg.

With its ice class and self-sustained cargo capabilities it was well suited to northern supply work. It could load and unload at anchorage using tugs and barges which it carried as deck cargo. Its stern ramp could also be brought into use for RoRo and as a landing stage. As newer ships come along it has been relegated to a lesser position in the operation, and will likely only be operating for another year or so at most.

I have never taken a photo of the ship, so instead refer to a spec sheet provided by its owners:
There are also numerous photos of the ship in action on the web. Click on Images 

As with the ConRos in the previous post, LoRos are also diminishing in number are not being replaced. In fact Atlantic RoRo Carriers has added non RoRos to its fleet to replace the scrapped Astrakhans. So we must enjoy them while we can.

Tanker Verige with escorts

The tanker Verige arrived this afternoon, but boarded its pilot at the outer pilot station where it was also met by tow tugs. Atlantic Oak took up position as stern tethered escort and Atlantic Willow stood by all the way in to Bedford Basin anchorage..

When an arriving ship requests extra tug escort it usually means that it has steering or propulsion problems.

The tanker arrived off Halifax yesterday at the height of a winter storm, and as there was no safe anchorage position outside the harbour, it put back out to sea. The pilot boat was off station due to severe conditions, and no ships arrived or departed. The ferries ran all day, but there was no other traffic in the harbour.

Verige was built in 2010 by 3 Maj Brodogradiliste, in Rijeka, Croatia and flies the Croatian flag. Operators are Uljanik Ship Management of Pula, Croatia. It measures 30,638 grt, 52,606 deadweight and is at the upper end of the range of Handysize products tankers.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Classic Tankers - Part 3 - coastal and inland

Not all classic tankers with island bridge were deep sea vessels. Some were built for coastal and Great Lakes work. They traveled widely, some even getting as far afield as Venezuela, but they never ventured too far out to sea.

Back by popular demand is Gulf Canada ex B.A.Peerless mentioned in the previous post

In full Gulf Oil livery, Gulf Canada makes its way up harbour in tow in May 1980, fresh from the shipyard and about to enter service for the season.

The crew is taking a supper break, having just painted out the word "Gulf" in the ship's name at the IEL dock in Dartmouth. They have already painted over the Gulf symbol on the funnel. It is about to become Coastal Canada. Unfortunately they went on to paint the funnel black which did nothing for the ship's looks.

There were many canal sized tankers operated by all the oil companies. They worked the Lakes, the St.Lawrence River and often the Atlantic coast in winter, reaching Halifax, Saint John and even to Newfoundland. With the opening of St.Lawrence Seaway in 1959, they were so small that they traveled in tandem so as to fill the lock with two ships.

 Imperial Collingwood and Imperial Windsor  London could both fit in the Eisenhower Lock with ease. Imperial tankers were always in pristine condition as these photos by the late Phil Damon attest.

Imperial Collingweood soon got a make over. Built in 1948 at Collingwood to canal dimensions, the ship was lengthened 41-'6" by Canadian Vickers in 1961. At 302'-3" (Lloyd's says 299-8") it  was more productive, but it was sent to MIL in Sorel in 1969 where it received a new bow and stern, lengthening it another 30 feet. Its efficient Uniflow steam engine made the investment worth while, and the new bulbous bow and extended stern gave it better sea keeping and it was more efficient going through the water.
When it was replaced by a new ship it was sold in 1979 and was refitted in Halifax as Seaway Trader, and painted a garish green.

Seaway Trader shows off its bulbous bow at Dook's dock in Eastern Passage while acquiring a new paint job.
It served until May 1887 when it was sold to Mexican owners as Patricia II. In 1992 it became Balboa Trader and in 1995 Rivas before arriving in Cartagena de Indias, Columbia,  May 8, 1995 to be broken up.

The much older Imperial Cornwall did not fare quite so well. It was built in 1930 by Furness Shipbuilding, Haverton Huill yard, as Acadialite for Imperial Oil. It was powered by a a triple expansion steam engine from North East Marine Engineering Works.
In a fleet-wide renaming in 1947 it became Imperial Cornwall  but had a bit of an upgrade in 1957-58 when its original teak bridge structure was replaced by the steel bridge from Imperial Kingston. In 1970 it was transferred to Halifax as port bunkering tanker, but that was only a stopgap until the new bunkering tanker Imperial Dartmouth could be delivered.It shuttled fuel to the Nova Scotia Light + Power Corp's Water Street generating station, and refueled ships, but it had an unfortunate propensity to wander when in reverse and it took countless moves to back in between the finger piers.
Imperial Cornwall at the Nova Scotia Light + Power dock in Halifax.

 Imperial Cornwall backs and fills to get alongside a ship at pier 31. After several moves, it finally made it.

In 1971 it was sold and renamed Golden Sable to work as a feeder from the Golden Eagle Refinery in Lévis, QC, but two different owners could not make a go of it, and it was condemned as unfit for clean products in 1972. It ended up in Louiseville, QC where it was used as a dock for a time before being broken up.

One of the quaintest island bridge tankers was always a curious sight because of the odd appearance of that very structure.

Originally to be named Wellington Kent it was delivered by George T.Davie + Sons of Lauzon, QC as Irvingwood, and was a bulk carrier. It was fitted with a traveling gantry to handle the bulk pulpwood and the bridge was open below to allow for the gantry to pass through. It could also carry steel and grain, and was built to canal dimensions. Owners Kent Line Ltd of Saint John, NB  sent it on what must have been a hair raising transatlantic crossing to North Shields, England , where it arrived February 16, 1957 for conversion to a tanker.  That done it returned to Canada, still with the arched bridge, but no longer any gantry, and served out its life with that unique feature. It served Irving Oil depots all over Atlantic Canada and Quebec, and even made a DOT supply trip to the arctic in 1959.

 Desperately in need of paint, Irvingwood has unloaded a shuttle cargo of furnace oil from Dartmouth to the S. Cunard Co pier in Halifax, looking just about ready for the scrappers. However it sailed for at least another year before getting a lick of paint, then another seven years.

It was fitted with a wartime built 16 cylinder GM Cleveland engine in 1952 then another of the same vintage in 1974. However it suffered from bouts of engine failure and was towed around by a tug from time to time.  
It was broken up in 1987 in Sydney harbour at Point Edward, NS.

By 1984 the painters has been at work, and the ship looked quite decent for its last few years of service.


Monday, January 26, 2015

Classic Tankers - Part 2

The last bastion of classic three island tankers was the United States. Thanks to the Jones Act, only US built, owned and crewed ships are allowed to trade between US ports. Ships live to ripe old ages under this regime, since they are so costly to replace. Although articulated tug/barges supplanted small coastal tankers, they were never large enough to displace the crude and product tankers built in the 1950s and 60s. Most of those managed to live out their lives until they reached their sunset dates.
Those dates were established as an orderly means of replacing single hull tankers with double hull, since a wholesale simultaneous replacement was impossible with the limited shipbuilding capability in the country.

I found Houston and Tampa to particularly good spots to see the three islanders, but they could be seen at almost any US port into the late 1990s.

The most prolific builder of US three islanders was the Bethlehem Steel Co, and their yard in Sparrows Point, MD churned out scores of the ships for all the oil majors and many others. If the ships begin to look all alike that may be why.

Seminole, launched as Stanvac Meridien and completed as Mobil Meridian in 1961 by Bethlehem, Sparrows  Point, was renamed Seminole in 1991. The major oil companies were trying to distance themselves from oil oil transportation - at least in the public's eye - after several embarrassing incidents, including the Exxon Valdez. However the 28,218 grt, 47,616 dwt ship still carried the red flying horse Pegasus until the mid-1990s. In its last few years of service the funnel was plain black. Its name was abbreviated to Minole for the trip to the breakers in Chittagong, Bangladesh where it arrived January 15, 1998.

Texaco's Star Massachusetts was a 1963 product of Sparrows Point, 16,516 grt, 25,728 dwt. It was just about to be renamed Massachusetts for the trip to the breakers. It arrived in Alang, India September 9, 1995.

(with tug Orange)
Neches was operated by Sabine Towing & Transportation Co Inc, one of several tanker companies not owned by the majors. Built in 1958 by Bethlehem Pacific Coast shipyard in San Francisco,  it started out as Hans Isbrantsen and in 1971 became Santa Paula, until 1982 when it passed to Sabine. It measured 20,066 grt, 32,791 dwt. It sailed to the breakers in under the St.Vincent and Grenadines flag, arriving at Alang May 17, 1996.

 (with tug A.P.St.Philip)

Sabine dated from 1957 when it came out of Sparrows Point as J.E.Dyer.  In 1972 it became Naeco, in 1973 Santa Clara, in 1973 Mission Santa Clara before joining the Sabine fleet in 1986.It measured 20,020 grt, 33,540 dwt. In 1996 it was renamed Amber Sea under the Belize flag and worked its way to Alang, arriving May 27.

Coastal Corpus Christi came from the Newport News Shipbuilding + Drydock Co as Esso Boston, trading for Humble Oil. In 1973 it was renamed Exxon Boston as part of the rebranding from Esso to Exxon. Coastal Tankships USA Inc acquired the ship in 1989, renamed it and operated the 30,680 grt, 49,557 dwt ship until 2000. It was then renamed Christi for the trip to Alang where it arrived August 2, 2000.

It was not the end of the line for all the traditional tankers, some got second wind.

(with tug Yvonne St.Phlip)
Spray emerged from Sparrows Point in 1960 as Gulfspray for Gulf Oil. They divested the ship in 1985 to American Heavy Lift Shipping Co and in 1997 it was sent to Avondale Shipyard, upstream from New Orleans, where a new 510ft double hull forebody was built. It emerged about 30 feet longer, with tonnages increasing from 18,776 grt to 23,358 and 29,150 dwt to 39,483 dwt, and with the name New River.It also lost its island bridge, and received a box like superstructure, mounted aft, over the old engine space.
The rebuild did extend the life of the steam turbine powered ship, but it still ended up at the breakers in Brownsville, TX in April 2011.

Rebuilding was only a stop gap until new tonnage could be acquired. All US tankers are now double hulled, all have superstructure aft, and I venture to say few have the character of the classic three islanders.

To leave the United States again, here are some more three islanders:
From the last post, B.A. Peerless (later Gulf Canada) had a fleet mate that ran from Venezuela to Montreal or Portland, ME with crude oil. B.A. Canada was built in 1953 by Uraga Dock in Yokosuka, Japan, 13,173 grt, 20, 949 dwt. According to one reader, when the ships met on the St.Lawrence, there was great saluting, both with whistles and flags, and it was a major event aboard both ships.
Almost the same size as its Canadian counterpart, B.A. Canada flew the Liberian flag except for a brief spell late in 1969 when it went to the British flag, then was sold to Liberian Oceanways Corp and went back under the Liberian flag, but with the very Greek sounding name Dimitrios D.M.    

 The old B/A logo is still visible on the bow, the hull is still grey, but the name has been plated over.

On August 30, 1975 it was stranded in the Panama Canal (details are sparse on what happened) on a voyage from Tampico to Manzanillo, MX. Damage was apparently fairly serious, because it was laid up in Jacksonville October 14, 1976, then on February 24, 1976 it was sold to ship breakers in Panama City, FL, where it was broken up starting March 10, 1976.

Meanwhile, the USSR was turning out similar looking, but smaller tankers. The Liepaya class of  7.949 grt, 11,890 dwt, built from 1959 and 1960, were used as military suppliers, but also accompanied the USSR fishing fleet off eastern Canada, both for fueling and to supply fresh water for processing. The latter they picked up in Halifax,  and Essentuki was a typical member of the class.
Seen here at pier 20 after loading water, the ship had several un-tanker-like characteristics, including deadlights in the forecastle, guard rails along the deck, a rather sleek hull shape and some extra communications equipment. Built in 1959 by the Admiralty Shipyard in Leningrad, it was reportedly broken up in 1991.

Rava Russkaya, built in 1960 by the Kherson shipyard, for the Latvian Steamship Co may have had less warlike characteristics. (However, in the background is Atlantic Cinderella. Its fleet mate Atlantic Conveyor was lost in the Falklands War.) Rava measured 7,652 grt, 11,770 dwt, and was deleted in 1991 after several years as a barge. It was also supplying fresh water to the Eastern Bloc fishing fleet when this photo was taken.

When Fiona Jane arrived in Halifax in early 1977 she was a sad looking sight. Once the pride of Ampol Petroleum Ltd  of the UK, she was built as Leslie J. Thompson by Cockerill-Ougree in Hoboken, Belgium. When built in 1959 she was considered to be quite a large ship at 16,206 grt, 24,600 dwt.
In 1970 she became the Fiona Jane under the Liberian flag and was sadly neglected by Nacional Neptunea SA. She had obviously suffered a funnel fire, but had never been repainted, and in fact she was only months away from the breakers. She arrived in Pusan July 25, 1977.
By the look of her she had ample quarters for officers (including a wireless operator) in the bridge structure, and large quarters aft for the large engine room crew. Perhaps not the epitome of the island bridge tanker, she was certainly typical of a type that will be seen no more. Present day handy size product tankers now have twice the carrying capacity and operate with one third the crew, all accommodated aft over a diesel engine. That's progress.